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Serving The Greater
Coeur D’Alene & Spokane Area

Serving The Greater Coeur D’Alene & Spokane Area


ACI Northwest Blog

Don’t Ignore These Late-Season Furnace Issues!


It might seem like winter has been going on forever, but we’re really getting there. It’s almost springtime. However, in the meantime, we still need our heating systems to work. It would be lovely if they just kept chugging along until the seasons change. But when they’ve been working so hard for so many months, problems can crop up.

There are some specific furnace issues that are more likely to happen this time of year from all the wear and tear of the winter. Here’s what to watch for.

Dirty Burners

A furnace that lights loudly after a bit of a delay, with a whoomp or boom noise, is allowing too much gas to accumulate before the burners light. This can happen due to the buildup of carbon from a winter’s worth of constant combustion. The carbon obstructs the oxygen flow and makes it harder for the burners to light. It can even stop them from lighting entirely, leading to a furnace that tries to start but immediately stops.

While this is a simple issue, it’s not one you should try to fix with some cleaning products and elbow grease. It requires professional furnace repair in Coeur d’Alene, ID to address the issue safely and accurately. 

Motor Strain

A screeching or grinding sound, an overheating smell, or a furnace that short cycles—turning on briefly, shutting down within moments, and turning on again minutes later—can all be caused by a blower fan motor that’s seen too much strain over the winter. One probable culprit is the bearings which keep the motor moving smoothly. They may need lubrication, or to be replaced if they are grinding down.

Loose Wiring

While it is true that electric furnaces have a lot of electrical components, gas furnaces have some, as well. So no matter what kind of furnace you have, there’s wiring that needs to be in good condition. There’s wiring to connect the electronic igniter of a gas furnace, or to connect the sequencer and heating elements of an electric furnace. And there’s wiring to connect the furnace to the thermostat.

One byproduct of the heating process is vibration. Your furnace shouldn’t be very loud, but it does hum as it works, and that hum is caused by sound waves or vibrations. And over the course of the winter, there have been a lot of vibrations. This can cause electrical wiring to slowly work its way loose. Connections may fail, and what looks like a broken-down furnace might just be a disconnected wire somewhere.

The Importance of Maintenance

The reason these problems are more likely to crop up late in the winter is that it’s been months since you’ve had furnace maintenance done. And if you didn’t have it done during the fall, you’re much more likely to encounter these issues (as well as others) because your furnace is still trying to cope with the wear and tear from last winter as well as this one! Being diligent about maintenance can cut repair needs by 85%.

ACI Northwest is here to help. Contact us today with any questions about furnace maintenance or repair.

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